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Thoughts from author: Helena Langdon

slightly more than nul points

Nothing says ‘summer is coming’ like staying indoors on a Saturday night in May to watch a contest that the UK hasn’t even the slightest hope of winning. Sure, the rest of Europe stopped backing our Eurovision entries decades ago, but this year would be different, wouldn’t it? We brewed the first of several dozen cups of tea and sat down to watch it unfold.

Before we start, you need to know that Australia were back in the competition for the second time. Don’t worry if that doesn’t immediately make sense to you. It’s all perfectly reasonable really.

 

Belgium were up first with a copy of a recent, world-famous fusion of pop and funk music.

 

Germany’s performance stood by the old saying, “If what you’re singing isn’t very good, just wear a hat made exclusively out of tiny bow ties.”

 

Then again, sometimes Eurovision outfits just don’t work and half of what you’re wearing has to go go.

 

Poland’s style inspiration came from a popular West End musical with a continental flare.

 

At this point, we remembered that we make smoothies and we should try to sell them.

 

During the half-time break, the organisers pulled out all the stops with a cameo from none other than Justin Timberlake, who made it clear that he was a true fan of the Eurovision Song Contest and was in absolutely no way motivated by anything else when he agreed to do this.

Finally, with all of that singing lark well and truly over it was time for the results of the voting.

Iceland used a dog to help them announce their results for some reason.

 

Malta gave us 12 points and we realised that we’ve always loved the Maltese with their falcons, addictive chocolate sweets and all of that other great Maltese stuff.

Then Australia gave their scores

 

Everybody was confused by the new voting system.

 

But in the end, despite Malta’s best efforts, Joe and Jake didn’t get much of a look in. But the important thing is that we reminded everyone to buy smoothies, and have probably kept our jobs for another year. 

 

 

and the award goes to...maybe us

You shouldn’t really brag about awards you’ve been nominated for. If Hollywood film stars have taught us anything, it’s that when you get nominated for something you’re supposed to say things like, “I’m just in shock right now,” and “this is so unexpected,” and “it’s an honour just to be nominated.”

But as a business we’ve always wanted to leave things a bit better than we found them, so we’re going to put our modesty aside and proudly announce that we’ve been nominated for a Guardian Sustainable Business Award. We’ve been recognised for a project we’ve been working on to reduce the amount of water used to grow our strawberries in Spain. This little film explains what we’ve been up to:

All we have to do now is find something presentable to wear and head to the awards ceremony on the 26th May. We have no idea if we’re going to win, but we’ll be sure to let you know either way. And, whatever happens, we’re just in shock right now, this is so unexpected and it’s an honour just to be nominated. 

A Londoner's commute on tube strike day

Londoners everywhere are being forced above ground, standing on stationary staircases hoping they'll move, scanning Oyster cards on bollards. 

A Londoner looks at a tree. "What is it?” he asks a stranger. The stranger, never having spoken to a human on his commute, runs away. 

The Londoner begins to walk. The air is fresh, the skies are clear and, to his left, two people are laughing. He has never felt so scared. 

Walking vigorously, he decides he needs a beverage. Something delicious and natural. Something fruit-based. "But what?" he thinks. 

The Londoner walks, clutching his inferior own label smoothie product. "This tastes odd", he thinks. "I did not make a wise decision here." 

He's not far from work now. He must cross the road. Not having a yellow line to guide him, he veers dangerously close to the edge. 

He sees a cyclist. "LOOK AT ME CYCLING WITH MY GIANT CYCLING LEGS," The Cyclist bellows. "WHAT A TIME TO BE ALIVE." 

"You don't need to shout," The Londoner tells The Cyclist. "you're right next to me". "I'M JUST VERY EXCITED. IT'S A BIG DAY FOR CYCLISTS." 

The Londoner, exhausted, stumbles into work. Brenda from HR is cowered in the corner. "Rail replacement bus service" she mumbles, wide-eyed. 

Shakily, he makes a coffee. Into the kitchenette strides The Cyclist. "GREAT COMMUTE TODAY," he bellows. "JUST LIKE EVERY DAY." The Londoner stirs his coffee, avoiding eye contact. 

"I JUST FEEL SORRY FOR ALL THE PEOPLE WHO DON'T CYCLE EVERY DAY," he bellows at the Londoner, who spills his coffee. 

The Londoner reaches his desk. Wanting to capture every detail, he opens his blog. "You wouldn't believe the morning I've had", he begins...

Little Free Library

In 2009, Tod Bol from Wisconsin decided to build a model of a schoolhouse as a tribute to his mother, a former school teacher who loved to read. He built the house out of recycled materials, filled it with books and placed it on a post in his garden with a sign on it that read ‘Little Free Library.’

His family and friends loved the idea, so he made some more little houses and gave those away for them to start their own libraries – and when their family and friends loved it as much as they did the idea for a global network of Little Free Libraries was born.

Anyone can build their own little house in the design of their choice, stock it with books they love, register it as an official Little Free Library and share it with their community. It’s estimated that by 2014 there will be as many as 12,000 libraries across 6 continents, and it’s growing all the time. 

You can find out more about this lovely enterprise and how you can get involved on the Little Free Library website here http://littlefreelibrary.org/. If you need some inspiration for your library design, here's a gallery of some of the houses people have built over the last four years http://www.flickr.com/photos/68010601@N03/with/6220870051/